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“Beautiful Scenery, Nice Staff”

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Hotel Borinquen Mountain Resort
Certificate of Excellence
Tel Aviv, Israel
Level Contributor
57 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
“Beautiful Scenery, Nice Staff”
Reviewed 23 April 2006

My family and I just returned from a visit to this hotel and I have to disagree with the previous review. We found the hotel staff to be exceptionally nice and helpful, even those who couldn't speak English. The manager was so nice that he personally drove us to the airport at 4 in the morning when the taxi prearranged by our travel agency didn't show up.
The hotel setting and grounds are absolutely stunning. My two kids (ages 6 and 11) loved the horseback riding and swimming pool. I enjoyed the mud bath and we all loved lying in the hammock outside our room each afternoon.
The food is simple but the loin of beef was very good (beef is a Costa Rican speciality) and the rice and chicken is also tasty.

  • Stayed April 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank colprubin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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750 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (156)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
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  • Portuguese first
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  • Any
English first
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 February 2006

We stayed for 2 nights.. found on arrival no useful information regarding resort offered. Dinner Buffet was awful.. just awful.. horrendous service / poor poor dining experiences over course of two days. Breakfast opened 30 minutes late.. inconvenienced most all guests. Not a person cared.. for the overall monies paid.. not a good thing.

The mud baths are anther story all together.. quite enjoyable.. unbelievably sophisicated for CR..enjoyed this trememdously..

Very hilly property.. extremely tough on old knees.. promised golf cart transportation is hard to come by and does not come when arranged for.

Unlike the rest of CR.. these employees respond only to tips.. and generous ones at that, otherwise they could care less if you are there.

Would go back for the spa experience.. but need to figure how to provide own food and beverages.. before rebooking.

  • Stayed December 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank KPartin717
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Florida
Level Contributor
30 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 January 2006

We (4 adults, 4 kids from ages 7 to 11)stayed 4 nights and wished for 6 or 7. The hotel it self is outstanding and luxurious in a 3rd world eco-lodge way. The activities, particularly the canopy zip lines and the ATV tour, are excellent. Tons of birds and monkeys. Gorgeous pool with swim up bar. A good mix of Central American, European, and American guests. A perfect place for the adventurous family. Two negatives: the drive there and the restaurant. If you drive from San Jose it's a hard five hours and the roads for the last 2 or 3 are so incredibly bad you can't adequately desribe them to Americans. They must be seen to be believed. We made a game out of avoiding the massive potholes and just swerved our way there. Much better roads in El Salvador and Guatemala. It's a lot better to fly into Liberia (Delta from Atlanta) if possible and then you could be at the hotel in an hour or so. Use Tricolor Rent-a-car in either San Jose or Liberia. Avoid Budget. The restaurant can be good if you are insistent that you want to order from the menu. The buffet, particularly at dinner, is weak. It's a shame b/c the facility is gorgeous and they have some good wine at around $20/bottle(but, insist on seeing the cellar where a lot can be found that is not on the official list). Be insistent and the staff will bend over backward to make you happy. The problem is that navigating the roads at night is not safe and the only meal option is at the hotel unless you drive 1 hour to Liberia which has a great grocery store and some good restaurant options. Bottom line: if you are adventurous then you'll love it. If you want American style conveniences then stay at the Four Seasons where everyone speaks English and you may as well be in Florida with some mountains sprinkled in. You can be at the beaches in 2.5 hours driving from the Borinquen (if someone tells you less they are lying or crazy). I'd go back in a heartbeat.

  • Stayed December 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank Gator_Bill_R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 20 July 2005

We stayed at this hotel for 2 nights, arriving from the Arenal area.

The positive points:
1) The grounds are kept up in beautiful condition, and the scenery is lovely. 2) The rooms are nicely decorated and comfortable. 3) The a/c worked quietly and without any problems, and there was no stale smell in the room. 4) The natural thermal pools were a real treat to soak in, as was the natural mud and natural sauna.

The negative points:
1) The roads leading to this hotel are so awful that we found ourselves in peril several times. The problem was not your typical pothole conditions - there were no potholes, because there was no paved roads on 98% of the roads there. Driving on inclines over broken concrete mixed with tumbled rocks, we 2ce found our car sliding back down the slope and stalling out. On a tour we took, this also happened with the experienced driver. The hotel tax is over 16% yet the government doesn't seem to have enough money to fix the roads! What are they doing with it? The management said they are trying to work with the government to fix the roads. But I doubt anything will happen anytime soon.
2) The hot water for the shower starts out nice and hot, but after a few minutes you have to keep slowly turning the cold water down, until after 10 minutes, you have to shut off the cold water altogether. 3) There is no hotel staff on-call at the premises after 10:00 P.M. They all leave the office building at that time. Being so far out in the middle of no where, can be unnerving. Also, if you need something after 10:00, you just have to wait til the morning. I found this very unusual for a large sized hotel. 4) The 8 hour tour we took with the hotel into the Rincon De La Vieja forest, was unorganized and disappointing. Instead of a tour van/bus, we all piled and squeezed into a small hired taxi jeep. There were 2 guides accompanying the tour, both who spoke very limited English. They did not converse with any of the guests during the entire long journey to the forest, nor on the way back. What is worse, the literature describing the tour specified lunch would be provided, and did not tell you to bring along your own drinks. We hiked for 4 hot long hours over not very easy paths, without any drinks provided to us. We all assumed they would be provided, as they were on the previous tours we had taken at other hotels. The group ended up getting separated (not on purpose) and 1 group had to wait for the other for 1 1/2 hours. Because of the delay we all just wanted them to get us drinks for the next hiking segment. We never were given lunch, and no discount/refund was offered. We had to request this to the hotel management on our own. 5) The room is supposed to come with a full stocked mini bar, and drinking water. We found no drinking water (bottles) in the room, yet on check-out day a hotel staff was charging us for the water. After explaining we never had any, they did not charge us for it. But they should have made sure the room had water (at check-in, and even on the next day of our stay). 6) On the morning of our check out, we were alerted by management that we had a flat tire. We had no clue how/when that could have happened since it was fine when we arrived 2 days before, and had not driven it since. They offered to resolve it for us, took the car to their car repair area and brought it back. They said there were no holes and it only needed air (that is hard to believe a tire would go flat on its own!). We left and stopped 2ce along the way to visually inspect the tire - it seemed fine. After getting thru the awful roads (about 1.5 - 2 hours), on smooth pavement, we kept hearing a weird noise. When we checked, we discovered that there was only 1 bolt (out of 5 bolts) holding the tire to the car. We had to borrow bolts from the other tires, in the middle of the highway. We then brought it to a repair shop, and they immediately found a hole, just by visible inspection - it was easy for anyone to see it. After waiting for the patch, and for new bolts to be put on, we were so delayed that we missed our planned tour for that day. It was a completely ruined day. Later, when contacting the hotel to research this incident, they completely exonerate themselves from any wrong doing and claim they put on all 5 bolts, and secured them. How is it possible that 4 out of 5 bolts then should not be on tire? And only on the tire that they worked on? (All the other tires had 5 bolts on them.)

Conclusion, not only would I not stay again at this hotel, I would also not visit this area. The stress in getting to this location (Rincon De La Vieja) was not worth anything that we did or saw. There are other places in Costa Rica that have similar natural features, and have more decent and safer roads, and more choices for hotels to stay at (I believe this was the nicest hotel in the area).

  • Stayed July 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Baton Rouge, LA
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 May 2005

We just returned from our honeymoon in Costa Rica - We spent the first 5 nights at the Four Seasons and then moved to the Borinquen Resort for the last 3 days to see a different part of Costa Rica.

The grounds of the resort are absolutely beautiful - and the pool is one of the prettiest I've seen. The resort is pretty big and is in the mountains - so walking around (or I should say up and down) gets to be a challenge after a while, even if you are in shape. They will come and get you from your room in a golf cart and drive you to another area of the resort. We saw monkeys, frogs, iguanas, and several birds on the grounds.

We were the only guests when we checked in to the resort, which was in a way neat, but in a way raised some questions (i.e., where are the people??). I think it was just a slow period - by the time we checked out we did see several others checking in. Probably because we were the only guests, some amenities of the hotel were not available - swim up bar at pool was not open, etc., and it was hard to get service in some areas b/c there was no one around. They are currently building a gift shop and adding on a spa around the mud baths, it looks like it will be very nice when they are finished.

The rooms are nice and clean - but the beds are very hard (we slept better during a daytime nap in the hammock on the patio than we did in the bed at night). Also, showers were lukewarm at best, and went cold after about 3 minutes.

The staff was friendly and very helpful, when we could communicate with them. Although my husband does speak some Spanish, no one on the resort at the time we were there spoke English so we did have a little trouble communicating (partially our fault, I know).

The food was definitely not the greatest. The breakfast was the best they had to offer, but still not excellent. Lunch and dinner were mediocre, and price was high for the quality.

Overall, we had a good stay, but when we go again I would probably prefer to visit the Borinquen as part of another tour, and stay somewhere else at night.

  • Stayed May 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank jiminycricket
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 30 April 2005

We booked a room here after I accidentally came across their website and stayed here for 3 days. The resort itself is top-notch. Beautiful grounds, beautiful privat rooms. Each room has a patio with a hammock that is like lying on a blanket instead of a net. The staff was wonderful and even has a "chauffeur" service. Because the grounds are large, they can pick you up from your door on a golf cart and take you to the spa, restaurant, pool, etc... if you prefer not to walk. My ONLY complaint about the place is that for a top notch resort, the food at the restaurant was pretty bad. OUr mixed salad with made up of lettuce and every vegetable (asparagus, mushroom, peas) were canned and not fresh. I am not a picky eater, but I had to return my pesto pasta b/c it was HORRIBLE (and for the price, it was absurd!!!!). The chicken and rice dish I got instead was better, but still not good. Even our tour guide (who works for the hotel) actually warned us about the food and said that the chef constatnly tells the owner of the resort (a Cuban business man) that he would like fresh new ingredients, but the owner refuses b/c of the high cost. You don't really have an option though since you are kind of isolated there (and even with a car, it's quite a drive to other places). Fun fact - our tour guide mentioned that Bruce WIllis was just there about 2 months ago. Also - Temptaion Island will be filmed there this month!

  • Stayed April 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 26 April 2005

When we were booked into the Borinquen Resort by a travel agent because our main destination on the Pacific Coast was sold out, we expected to be disappointed and eager to leave. We couldn't have been more wrong -- at the end of three days and two nights there, we were trying to figure out when we could come back and stay for an entire week. The resort is in the foothills that adjoin the Rincon Vieja National Park, about a 50-minute drive from the Liberia Airport. The drive was memorable -- roads somewhat bumpy, but we were awed by the spectacular scenery as we climbed into the highlands. We saw cattle, goats, trees filled with cavorting spider monkeys, mysterious outcroppings of pumice, bosque forest, steaming volcanoes (in the distance), sugar cane farms and small villages. We asked our affable driver, Reinert, to stop to let us check out a charming open-air karaoke bar and had our first bottle of the excellent local beer, Imperial. The resort itself is a series of spacious bungalows that sprawl up the hill. Ours was clean and quite spacious, with a mini bar and modern bathroom (shower, no tub). We had a shaded front porch with a hammock, where we sat and watched the twice daily cattle drive every morning and evening (the resort has a dairy farm, and fresh cheese seems to be served with every meal.) At dusk, we'd hear the howler monkeys sing their eerie song all around us. We saw toucans, hummingbirds, iguanas, and momo birds. The pool was lovely and clean, and we appreciated the little bath house and bar near the pool since it was a hike back uphill to our bungalow. (Although we could have requested a golf cart ride at any time.) The sulfur steam baths are spectacular. We didn't try the mud spa or the mineral baths or the horse rides, ATV trips or any of the eco-adventures because we were traveling with a demanding toddler, but they seemed top notch. There was a lovely hiking path that wound through the forest on the resort that was a living botany lesson, and even our toddler could manage that and feel like he had an adventure of his own. The breakfasts were ample, with local treats like plantains. Dinners were geared to North American tastes, with vegeterian entrees like pasta, and beefsteak and mahi mahi for fish and meat-eaters. The management was attentive and enthusiastic, and the staff was friendly and generous. All in all, a peaceful, almost spiritual sojourn in the gorgeous Costa Rican countryside.

  • Stayed April 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Borinquen Mountain Resort

Property: Hotel Borinquen Mountain Resort
Address: P.O. Box 108, Rincon de La Vieja 5000, Costa Rica
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Guanacaste > Rincon de La Vieja
Amenities:
Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 7 Hotels in Rincon de La Vieja
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel Borinquen Mountain Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 23
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Hot Springs Spa at Borinquen Mountain Resort is your exclusive vacation spot located in Guanacaste in the North Pacific Region of Costa Rica.The Hotel was designed and created in 1999 with the sole purpose of unlocking the exceptional beauty of the Rincon de la Vieja countryside and bringing it to the world. When you visit Hotel Borinquen you are literally stepping into a world apart. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel Borinquen Mountain Rincon De La Vieja
Resort Borinquen Mountain
Hotel Borinquen Mountain Resort Costa Rica/Rincon De La Vieja

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